Secrets to DIY Organic Learning : 7-Steps to Effective Left and Right-directed Learning.

Quite a few people wanted to kick my butt when I revealed that being the honorary recipient of a copy of my new e-book, “Secrets to DIY Organic Learning : 7-Steps to Effective Left and Right-directed Learning” was an April Fool prank. I realized that I could be a pretty brilliant scammer if I put my mind to it albeit an overgrown, estrogen-filled, middle-aged Artemis Fowl.

When my daughter saw me typing in the comment the following day that it was a prank she gasped and exclaimed that even SHE was fooled. We live in the same apartment so if there really was an ebook out she’d have some inkling about it since she likes spying on what I’m doing on my laptop every so often. (How many of you have kids like that?)

The folks from Malaysia’s Homeschooling community, my mailing list and my daughter weren’t the only one who got pranked that day. My boyfriend of 6-months got a different sort of royal prank pulled on him. I played the damsel in distress receiving calls and SMS-es from unknown persons “from the UK” and he thought I was being contacted by scammers. “Oh, dear, what should I do????” I lamented with as much drama as can be conveyed by an SMS.  So each time I received an SMS from him asking me to be careful I burst out laughing at my  “Scam-ception” (a scam within a scam ala Inception). This Scamception got me thinking that of all the pranks I’ve pulled that day the one about the ebook was the best by far.  I don’t even know how I’m going to top my own game next year.

But here’s what the day’s event (Scamception!) taught me :

Continue reading “Secrets to DIY Organic Learning : 7-Steps to Effective Left and Right-directed Learning.”


What a Parent Who Used To Be a Teacher Really Want to Say to Parents And Teachers.

I had a request from ********* to post the comments I had written on a fb comments thread on a CNN article What Teachers Really Want To Tell Parents.

In between the time it took for me to post this another article responding to it appeared here

The original responses I made on my fb comments thread on Sept 10 to the CNN article : What Teachers Really Want To Tell Parents  (as is) is in blue.  My expanded comments (for context) if necessary will be in Italics. 

I like the first line :

“I just cant deal with parents anymore; they’re killing us.”  

– Send the kids back to the parents. 😀  

Why don’t they? A parent is almost as qualified if not better qualified to teach their own children than a school teacher is – for many, many reasons outside the context of this article. Don’t believe me? Think about it logically : Both teachers and parents went through the same K-12 education. All things being equal they studied the same content. Unless you’re trying to tell me for 12 years of their education their teachers had pre-selected an elite bunch of students to teach better to knowing one day this elite bunch will become the next generation of teachers. – I doubt it!

Continue reading “What a Parent Who Used To Be a Teacher Really Want to Say to Parents And Teachers.”

Education the great unequalizer. – learning English as a 2nd language.

One of the most naive assumptions I have made in life is that it is through education that a person has the best chance to shape his own destiny. Actually, education drives further apart the initial small divide. People with certain professions get to live in certain areas which gives them access to certain schools. People who are misinformed or less informed send their children unwittingly to “the wrong school”. This has serious repercussions; if you go to the wrong school, you’re going to miss experiencing certain things or learning from certain great mentors and these differences greatly affect how you shape your world beyond your education experience.

Continue reading “Education the great unequalizer. – learning English as a 2nd language.”

Part 3: The shape of education to come.

We are on the verge of radical shifts in our education systems, and not everyone will be happy to see them develop.

The pace of change mandates that we produce a faster, smarter, better grade of human being.  Current systems are preventing that from happening.  Future education systems will be unleashed with the advent of a standardized rapid courseware-builder and a single-point global distribution system. In the future, we predict students entering the workforce will be ten times smarter than they are today.

Continue reading “Part 3: The shape of education to come.”

Why School is Bad for you

I’ve now crossed the threshold from the Innovator’s Dilemma to being able to confidently be like the flight attendant that gestures and says, “This way please to the exit……stay calm but hurry up.”

Hey, nothing to worry about. It’s just the Plane of Education System crashing. No need to hurry. Take your time.theelemetbook They’ve still got fuel (government spending) even though both engines are out. There aren’t going to be enough parachutes for everyone but that’s OK….stay buckled in your seat, like how schools have taught you to just sit down and be a good little boy or girl.

I’m filing this under Thomas Frey’s Future of Education because I plan to bring everything I am coming across which supports the ideas outlined in his paper under one theme.

I hope I have convinced you to get your copy and make at least 5 other people get it too! (I have 2 at least count.) And if you do, please tell me about it so we can share the experience together.

Here are excerpts taken from Ken Robinson’s THE ELEMENT – HOW FINDING YOUR PASSION CHANGES EVERYTHING. Picture for illustration only. Continue reading “Why School is Bad for you”

Part 2 : Setting the stage for future education : democratization of the learning process and nurturing confident learners.

The key elements, the seeds of innovation, will allow a new organic form of education to spring to life.

Unlimited Shelf space.

New forms of education are not achieved by  simply recording the lectures for later broadcast.  We have to rethink 2 aspects of education :

  1. That it must take place in the classroom
  2. Only educators can create new courses.

This kind of thinking restricts the potential proliferation of new courseware.

How and changed the landscape of commerce.

Continue reading “Part 2 : Setting the stage for future education : democratization of the learning process and nurturing confident learners.”

Introduction to my series of posts on Future of Education based on Thomas Frey’s paper.

Not long after I decided to vent my frustration at the amateurs who are going to give e-learning a bad name, I came across Thomas Frey’s  blog on Future Education. Well, actually, I wouldn’t be able to come across it had I not been so frustrated about my lack of ability to come up with a solid and grounded infrastructure to flesh-out an ideal I had set out on a year before. Thomas Frey’s paper was the most conclusive article on the Future of Education I could find out there. Or maybe it was just the most aligned to my conceptions of what I wanted the future of education to look like for me.

Two years ago I set-up a small ESL learning center to serve as a sort of incubator center for me to continue observing the language and cognitive processes of young people at the threshold of young adulthood. What would happen if I could work outside the constraints of the education system? What if I could control as many variables as possible? Could I achieve a lot more with a lot less?

Continue reading “Introduction to my series of posts on Future of Education based on Thomas Frey’s paper.”

Part 1 – The 8 driving forces changing education from the outside.

(1) If you haven’t yet, watch Sir Ken Robinson’s video, – Do Schools Kill Creativity to understand why school did it.

(2) Open your eyes to the world – we keep talking about creativity and innovation. If schools killed it, what happens to you when you leave?

(3) Now read this levelled-down version of Futurist Thomas Frey’s piece on The Future of Education.


Within two years a radical shift will begin to occur in the world of education.

While many people are making predictions about the direction that education systems are headed, they have found the best predictors to be hidden in the participative viral systems springing to life in the online world, such as iTunes and Amazon.

These bottom-up approaches (organic!) are quick to develop, participant-driven systems that are closely aligned to the demands of the marketplace.

Futurist Thomas Frey and the members and associated research teams of DaVinci Institute collaborated on this research study. In this paper they focussed on the key missing elements that will cause the disruptive next generation education systems to emerge.

Continue reading “Part 1 – The 8 driving forces changing education from the outside.”

Organic Learning – my elaboration.

I’m going to start from a context that already exists so for those of you who are completely new to this phrase, you won’t be completely lost.

“Birds fly, fish swim, man thinks and learns………… What we need to do, and all we need to do, is bring as much of the world as we can into [their lives]; give children as much help and guidance as they ask for; listen respectfully when they feel like talking; and then get out of the way. We can trust them to do the rest.” – John Holt, How Children Learn.

In applying organic learning in teaching ESL, let’s not focus on every single tiny aspect of John Holt’s unschooling philosophy. Let’s take some parts we can integrate with other parts of what’s going on in ESL and add a dose of what’s our own personal teaching style and philosophy. Here are the parts I’m taking and integrating with other ideas.

Learning in the world instead of in school Continue reading “Organic Learning – my elaboration.”

What’s your story?

Here’s mine :

Like everyone else, I went through a schooling experience that left me wanting and damaged in many ways. But unlike everyone else, I was idealistic about being able to find a way to make schools how I intended for it to be for me: a place which inculcated a transcendental narrative to make this world a better place. A better place how?

– opportunities

– discovery

– creation

Opportunities to go anywhere and be anything you want to be. Continue reading “What’s your story?”